What is the difference between an FPGA and an ASIC? Just ask Xilinx and they will tell you. Of course, I am going to dive into that topic some, too. It is important to note Xilinx, however, because the company is an authority when it comes to this subject. So first, what is an FPGA? It is a field programmable gate array. Okay, now what is an ASIC? An ASIC is an Application Specific Integrated Circuit.

Type Of Devices Used

Well, that clears it up for you, right? All joking aside, I’m sure it helps knowing what the acronyms stand for, but you certainly want to know more than that. What are the benefits of each, and what are the differences between the two types of devices? Does Xilinx offer as many ASIC devices as it does FPGAs?

Xilinx And FPGAs

When it comes to these two types of devices, a comparison shows not just the benefits of each but the advantages of one over another. Let’s take a look at those advantages. For be example, Xilinx FPGAs offer a simpler design cycle. They are also faster time to market, and you don’t have to worry about non recurring expenses right out of the gate. The FPGAs are also said to offer a more predictable project cycle and field reprogrammability.

 

Integrated Circuit

Now, what advantages do the application specific integrated circuits have over the field programmable gate arrays? Well, let’s just say first of all that ASICs have a lower per unit cost. On top of that, they offer full custom capability and a smaller form factor. That actually sounds really good, but the advantages stop there. As you can see, it really depends on what you need out of one of these two types of devices. It is certainly obvious that one is more cost efficient.

Remember, it’s not just about the advantages, but the benefits of each type of product in general. And, once you pick between an ASIC and an FPGA, you then have to decide which product you want to buy specifically. When it comes to the listed benefits for FPGAs and ASICs, it should be noted as well that the FPGAs also have more benefits. It might be a good idea to start looking at FPGA prices to see if these field programmable gate arrays are in your wheelhouse. You have to make that decision, but now you know a little more about how these types of products stack up against each other. For more details click here at http://www.directics.com/fpga-programming/